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BerichtGeplaatst: 07 Jul 2006 6:23    Onderwerp: 7 juli Reageer met quote

1917 British Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps is officially established

On this day in 1917, British Army Council Instruction Number 1069 formally establishes the British Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps (WAAC), authorizing female volunteers to serve alongside their male counterparts in France during World War I.

By 1917, large numbers of women were already working in munitions factories throughout Britain, serving the crucial function of supplying sufficient shells and other munitions for the Allied war effort. The harsh conditions in the factories were undeniable, with long hours spent working with noxious chemicals such as the explosive TNT; a total of 61 female munitions workers died of poisoning, while 81 others died in accidents at work. An explosion at a munitions factory in Silvertown, East London, when an accidental fire ignited 50 tons of TNT, killed 69 more women and severely injured 72 more.

In early 1917, a campaign began to allow women to more directly support the war effort by enlisting in the army to perform labors such as cookery, mechanical and clerical work and other miscellaneous tasks that would otherwise be done by men who could better serve their country in the trenches. By March 11, 1917, even Sir Douglas Haig, the British commander in chief, had come around to the idea, writing to the British War Office that “the principle of employing women in this country [France] is accepted and they will be made use of wherever conditions admit.”

The establishment of the WAAC in the summer of 1917 meant that, for the first time, women were to be put in uniform and sent to France to serve as clerks, telephone operators, waitresses and in other positions on the war front. Women were paid less than their male counterparts: 24 shillings per week for unskilled labor and up to twice that for more skilled labor, such as shorthand typing. As the stated purpose behind the WAAC was to release British soldiers doing menial work in Britain and France for active service at the front, the War Office set the restriction that for every woman given a job through the WAAC, a man had to be released for frontline duties. None of the female volunteers could become officers—according to traditions in the British army—but those who rose in the ranks were given the status of “controllers” or “administrators.” By the end of World War I, approximately 80,000 women had served in the three British women’s forces—the WAAC, the Women’s Relief Defense Corps and the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry—as non-combatants, but full-fledged contributors to the Allied war effort.

http://www.historychannel.com
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:10    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The July 1914 Crisis: Chronology of Events

July 7, 1914 - The Serbian prime minister denies foreknowledge of the plot

...At meeting of the Austrian Council of Ministers--all but Tisza (fearful of Russian intervention) urge military action. Berchtold urges that any diplomatic action taken should "only end in war." Agreement is concluded on presenting an ultimatum, with the hint that it should be so framed as to be unacceptable to Serbia, thus preparing the way for war. Berchtold states: "A war with Russia would be the most probable consequence of our entering Serbia." Count Hoyos, direct from Berlin, reports the German promise of unconditional support to Austria

http://web.jjay.cuny.edu/~jobrien/reference/ob16.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:12    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Austrian Ministerial Council Meeting Minutes, 7 July 1914

Reproduced below are the official minutes of the Austrian Ministerial Council Meeting which took place on 7 July 1914, some nine days following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie in Sarajevo on 28 June 1914.

During the meeting the prospect of war with Serbia was debated; aside from the Hungarian Prime Minister, Count Tisza, all present favoured presenting Serbia with a sufficiently severe ultimatum that could not be accepted. Its rejection would therefore prove grounds for a subsequent declaration of war.

Minutes of Ministerial Council on affairs of State held at Vienna on July 7, 1914, under the presidency of the Minister of the Royal and Imperial Household and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Count Berchtold.

Also present:
The Austrian Premier, Count Sturkh
The Hungarian Premier, Count Tisza
The Joint Minister for Finance, Ritter von Bilinski
The War Minister, Ritter von Krobatin

Keeper of the Minutes: Councillor of Legation, Count Hoyos

Agenda: Bosnian Affairs - The diplomatic action against Serbia

The President opens the sitting by remarking that the Ministerial Council has been called in order to advise on the measures to be used in reforming the evil internal political conditions in Bosnia and Herzegovina, as shown up by the disastrous event at Serajevo.

In his opinion there were various internal measures applicable within Bosnia, the use of which seemed to him very appropriate, in order to deal with the critical situation; but first of all they must make up their minds as to whether the moment had not come for reducing Serbia to permanent inoffensiveness by a demonstration of their power.

So decisive a blow could not be dealt without previous diplomatic preparation; consequently he had approached the German Government. The conversations at Berlin had led to a very satisfactory result, inasmuch as both the Emperor William and Herr von Bethmann Hollweg had most emphatically assured its of Germany's unconditional support in the case of hostilities with Serbia.

Meanwhile, we still had to reckon with Italy and with Rumania, and here he agreed with the Berlin Cabinet that it would be better to negotiate and be prepared for any claims to compensation which might arise. He was clear in his own mind that hostilities with Serbia would entail war with Russia. Russia, however, was now playing a far-seeing game, and was calculating on a policy of being able to unite the Balkan States, including Rumania, with the eventual objective of launching them at an appropriate moment against the Monarchy.

He suggested that we must reckon on the fact that in face of such a policy our situation was bound steadily to deteriorate, and all the more if an inactive policy of laisser alley were to be interpreted as a sign of weakness by our own South Slavs and Rumanians, and were to be a direct encouragement to the power of attraction of the two neighbour States.

The logical inference to be drawn from his remarks was that we must be beforehand with our enemies and, by bringing matters to a head with Serbia, must call a halt to the gathering momentum of events; later it would no longer be possible to do so.

The Hungarian Premier agreed that during the last few days the results of our investigations and the tone of the Serbian press had put a materially new complexion on events, and emphasized the fact that he himself held the possibility of warlike action against Serbia to be more obvious than he had thought in the period immediately after the act at Serajevo.

But he would never give his consent to a surprise attack on Serbia without previous diplomatic action, as seemed to be contemplated and as had unfortunately already been made the subject of discussion by Count Hoyos at Berlin; were that done, in his opinion, our position in the eyes of Europe would be an extremely bad one, and in all probability we should have to reckon with the enmity of the whole Balkans, except Bulgaria, while Bulgaria herself being at present very much weakened would not be able to give us the necessary support.

It was absolutely necessary that we should formulate demands against Serbia and only send an ultimatum in case Serbia failed to satisfy them. These demands must undoubtedly be hard, but should not be impossible of fulfilment. Should Serbia accept them we should be able to quote a dazzling diplomatic victory, and our prestige in the Balkans would be raised.

Should our demands not be accepted he himself would then be for warlike action, but even at this point he thought it essential to lay stress on the fact that the object of such action ought to be the reduction of Serbia, but not her complete annihilation; first, because this would never be allowed by Russia without a life and death struggle, and also because he, as Hungarian Premier, could never consent to the annexation of part of Serbia by the Monarchy.

It was not Germany's place to judge whether we should now deal a blow at Serbia or not. Personally, he was of opinion that it was not absolutely necessary to go to war at this moment. At the present time we must take into account that the agitation against us in Rumania was very strong, that in view of the excited state of public opinion, we should have to reckon with a Rumanian attack.

We must also remember that in the sphere of European politics the relation of French to German power would continually deteriorate because of the low birthrate, and that Germany would therefore continually have more troops at her disposal, as time went on, against Russia.

These considerations ought all to be weighed on the occasion of a decision as important as the one to be taken to-day; he must, therefore, come back to this, that, in spite of the crisis of affairs in Bosnia, he would not make up his mind unconditionally for war.

The President remarked that the history of the last years had shown that while diplomatic successes against Serbia raised the reputation of the Monarchy for the time being, the actual tension in our relations with Serbia had only increased. Neither our success during the annexation crisis, nor at the creation of Albania, nor Serbia's submission later in consequence of our ultimatum of the autumn of last year, had altered the real situation in any way.

He imagined that energetic action alone would suffice to solve once for all the problem created by the systematic propaganda for a Greater Serbia encouraged from Belgrade, the disintegrating effects of which had made themselves felt as far as Agram and Zara.

As regards the danger of a hostile attitude on the part of Rumania, mentioned by the Hungarian Premier, the President remarked that this was less to be feared now than later on, when the unity of interests between Rumania and Serbia would have become more pronounced.

To be sure, King Carol had let fall doubts as to whether he would be able to fulfil his duty as an ally, should occasion arise, by sending active help. On the other hand, it was scarcely likely that he would allow himself to be so far carried away as to become involved in hostilities against the Monarchy, even supposing that public opinion did not itself oppose that. Further, there was Rumanian fear of Bulgaria; even as things stood at present this was bound to a certain extent to hamper Rumania's freedom of movement.

As for the observation made by the Hungarian Premier on the relative strength of France and Germany, surely they had to remember that the decreasing birthrate of France was counter-balanced by the infinitely more rapid increase in the population of Russia, so that the argument that in future Germany would always have more troops at her disposal against France would not hold.

The Austrian Premier remarked that to-day's Ministerial Council had actually been called for the purpose of advising about the internal measures to be taken in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in order to make effective the present inquiry into the assassination, on the one hand, and, on the other, to counteract the Greater Serbia propaganda. But now these questions must give way to the principal question; should we solve the internal crisis in Bosnia by a demonstration of power against Serbia?

Two considerations now made this principal question an immediate one; first, the Governor of Bosnia and Herzegovina was proceeding on the presumption, acquired in the course of inquiries and in consequence of his knowledge of Bosnian affairs, that no internal measures would be effective, unless we made up our minds to deal a forceful blow to Serbia abroad. In view of this report from General Potiorek we must ask ourselves whether the schismatic activities originating in Serbia could be stopped at all, unless we took action against the Kingdom.

During the last few days the whole situation had received a materially fresh complexion and a psychological situation had been created, which, in his opinion, led unconditionally to an issue of arms with Serbia.

He certainly agreed with the Hungarian Premier that it was for us, and not for the German Government, to decide whether a war were necessary or no; he must nevertheless observe that our decision must be materially influenced by the fact that, in the quarter which we were bound to regard as the greatest support of our policy in 'the Triple Alliance, unconditional loyalty was, as we were informed, promised to us and that, in addition, on our making inquiry, we were urged to act at once; Count Tisza ought to weigh this fact, and to consider that a hesitating, weak policy would run us into the danger of losing the certainty of this unconditional support of the German Empire on a future occasion.

This was the second consideration which must be taken into account in forming our decision, and was additional to our interest in restoring order in Bosnia.

How to begin the conflict was a question of detail, and should the Hungarian Government be of opinion that a surprise attack "sans crier Bare," to use Count Tisza's expression, was not feasible, then they must needs think of some other way; but he did most earnestly hope that, whatever they might do, they would act quickly, and our trade and commerce be spared a long period of unrest.

All this was detail compared with the chief question as to whether it should in any case come to armed action or not, and here the authoritative interest was the reputation and stability of the Monarchy, whose South Slav provinces he held to be lost if nothing were to happen.

They ought, therefore, to make up their minds to-day, in a general way, whether they meant to act or not. He, too, shared the President's view that the situation would not be in the least improved by a diplomatic success. If, therefore, international considerations caused them to adopt the method of an initial diplomatic action against Serbia, this would have to be done with the firm intention o f allowing such action to end only in a war.

The Joint Finance Minister observed that Count Sturkh had referred to the fact that the Governor wanted war. For two years General Potiorek had held the view that we must match ourselves against Serbia, in order to be able to retain Bosnia and Herzegovina. We ought not to forget that the Governor, who was on the spot, could better judge the situation. Herr von Bilinski, too, was convinced that a decisive struggle was unavoidable sooner or later.

The Hungarian Premier observed that he had the highest opinion of the present Governor as soldier, but, as regards the civil administration, it could not be denied that it had broken down completely and that reform was absolutely essential. He would not now enter more fully into this question, especially as it was no time for big alterations; he would only observe that the most incredible conditions must be reigning among the police, to make it possible that six or seven persons known to the police should have been able to place themselves along the route of the procession on the day of the assassination, armed with bombs and revolvers without a single one of them being noticed or removed by the police. He could not see why the condition of Bosnia could not be materially improved by means of a thorough reform of the administration.

The Joint War Minister is of opinion that a diplomatic success would he of no value. Such a success would only be interpreted as a weakness. From the military point of view he must emphasize the fact that it would be better to wage the war now, rather than later, as the balance of power would move disproportionately against us later on.

As for the procedure for beginning war, he might be permitted to remark that the two great wars of recent years, both the Russo-Japanese and the Balkan Wars, had been begun without previous declarations of war. His opinion was at first only to carry through their contemplated mobilization against Serbia, and let general mobilization wait until they knew whether Russia was going to take action or not.

We had already neglected two opportunities of solving the Serbian question and had deferred decision on both occasions. If we did this again and took no notice of this latest provocation, this would be taken as a sign of weakness in every South Slav province and we should be inducing an increase of the agitation directed against us.

It would be desirable from a military point of view if the mobilization could be carried out at once, and secretly, and a summons addressed to Serbia only after mobilization had been completed. This would also be a good thing as against the Russian forces, as just about this time the Russian frontier forces were not at their full strength on account of harvest-leave.

Thereupon a discussion developed about the aims of warlike action against Serbia, and the Hungarian Premier's point of view was accepted, to the effect that Serbia should be reduced in size, but not, in view of Russia, entirely annihilated.

The Austrian Premier emphasized the fact that it might also be advisable to remove the Karageorgevich dynasty and to give the Crown to a European prince, as well as to induce a certain condition of dependency of this reduced kingdom on the Monarchy in relation to military affairs.

The Hungarian Premier still remained convinced that the Monarchy could adopt a successful Balkan policy by means of Bulgaria's adherence to the Triple Alliance, and pointed out what a frightful calamity a European war would be under present circumstances.

The question of war was then further argued thoroughly in the course of a long discussion. At the end of this discussion agreement was reached:

(1) That all present wish for the speediest decision which is practicable in the conflict with Serbia, whether by means of war or peace.

(2) That the Ministerial Council is prepared to adopt the point of view of the Hungarian Premier to the effect that mobilization shall only follow after concrete demands have been addressed to Serbia, and have been refused, and an ultimatum has further been sent.

(3) On the other hand, all present, excepting the Hungarian Premier, hold that a purely diplomatic success, even if ending in a startling humiliation for Serbia, would be without value, and that, therefore, the demands to be put to Serbia must be so far-reaching as to pre-suppose a refusal, so that the way would be prepared for a radical solution by means of military intervention.

Count Tisza observes that he is desirous of meeting the views of all present, and therefore would be prepared to concede this much, that he would agree that the demands to be put to Serbia must be very hard, yet must not be of such a nature as to cause our intention of putting unacceptable demands to become obvious.

Otherwise, our legal position would be an impossible one for a declaration of war. The text of the Note would have to be most carefully formulated, and he must lay importance on the necessity of seeing the Note before its despatch. He must further stress the necessity, as regards his own person, of taking the obvious action contingent on having had his point of view rejected.

The meeting was now adjourned till the afternoon.

On the reassembly of the Ministerial Council, the Chief of the General Staff, and the Representative of the Navy Command [Admiral Kailer] were also present.

By request of the President, the Minister for War addressed the meeting and put the following three questions to the Chief of the General Staff [Von Hoetzendorff]:

(1) Whether it would be possible to mobilize against Serbia first, and only subsequently against Russia as well, if this should become necessary?

(2) Whether large bodies of troops could be retained in Transylvania to overawe Rumania?

(3) At which point the war against Russia would be begun?

The Chief of the General Staff, in response to these inquiries, supplies information which is confidential, and therefore requests that it be omitted from the Minutes.

A discussion of some length develops out of these explanations as to the relation of forces and the probable course of a European war, which, on account of its confidential character, could not be entered on the Minutes.

At the end of this discussion the Hungarian Premier repeats his views on the question of war, and once more appeals to all present to weigh their decisions with care.

A discussion followed on the points to be included in the demands to be put in the Note to Serbia. The Ministerial Council took no definite decision as to these points; suggestions were simply made with a view to obtaining an idea of what demands might be put.

The President sums up to the effect that though there still existed a divergence of view between all members and Count Tisza, yet they had come nearer agreement, inasmuch as the Hungarian Premier's own proposals would in all probability lead up to that armed conflict with Serbia, which he and the others at the meeting held to be necessary.

Count Berchtold informs the meeting that he proposes to travel to Ischl on the 8th, and report to His Imperial Apostolic Majesty. The Hungarian Premier requests the President to submit also a humble memorial, which he would draw up, on his view of the situation.

After a communiqué had been drawn up for the Press, the President closes the meeting.

Secretary: A. HOYOS (Signature)
BERCHTOLD (Signature)

I have noted the contents of these Minutes. Vienna, August 16th, 1914.
FRANZ JOSEF (Signature)

Source Records of the Great War, Vol. I, ed. Charles F. Horne, National Alumni 1923, http://www.firstworldwar.com/source/austriancouncilmeeting.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:19    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Australia and the Gallipoli Campaign

7 July 1915 - Cholera inoculations began at Anzac.

http://www.anzacsite.gov.au/5environment/timelines/australia-gallipoli-campaign/july-1915.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:20    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

The First Battle of the Isonzo, 1915

(...) Two additional divisions of Austro-Hungarian infantry were rapidly despatched to Boroevic's aid and the Austrian commander successfully prevented any Italian crossing of the Isonzo before Cadorna called off his attack after two weeks on 7 July.

The Italians had however made a number of minor gains: Mount Krn was partly occupied and the heights around Plezzo were taken, as was Mount Colowrat (opposite Tolmino).

The pause was brief however; the Second Battle of the Isonzo was launched just eleven days later, on 18 July 1915.

http://www.firstworldwar.com/battles/isonzo1.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:23    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

General situation in the middle of 1915

Further discussions about Allied dispositions and strategy took place at the 1st Inter-Allied Military Conference on 7 July 1915.

http://www.1914-1918.net/bat12.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:24    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

A Brief History of the 79th Cameron Highlanders of Canada Overseas Drafting Detachment 1915-1916

7 July 1915 - Regiment accepting 600 recruits for garrison duty and active duty. Those who have seen previous service are being given preference.

http://cameronhighlanderscanada.com/43pg7.htm
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Report on the treatment of Armenian children in Trebizond

AMERICAN CONSULATE
TREBIZOND.
July 7, 1915.

Honorable Henry Morgenthau,
American Ambassador
Constantinople.

Sir:-

Referring to my despatches to the Embassy of June 28th, 30th and July 3rd regarding the deportation of the Armenians from Trebizond to the Interior via Gumashhane and my despatch of July 3rd to the Department, copy of which was sent to the Embassy, regarding the suicide of Cavass Ohannes I now desire to report that the Armenian population of Trebizond Vilayet is estimated at 36,000 persons. The city of Trebizond and surrounding villages is estimated at 10,000 Armenians. Of this later number 5200 have already been sent away. The children, when the parents so desired, were left behind and placed in large houses in different parts of the city. There are approximately three thousand such children retained in these houses called by the Turks "Orphanages"

Girls up to 15 years of age inclusive, and boys to 10 years of age inclusive are accepted; those over these ages are compelled to go with their parents. A number of Armenian women and young ladies are retained in these houses to look after the infants and children. The institutions are guarded by gendarmes and each institution has a Turkish Mudir or Director.

Dr. and Mrs. Crawford received about 300 children into their school from parents who were being sent away. Some of these children were very small and there were a few babies. In some cases the parents left money or jewelry to cover the expenses of the children, or for safe keeping. Of course this was all contrary to the proclamation on which had been posted by the government.

The Governor General sent words to Dr. Crawford that he would be required to give up the children as the authorities were prepared to take care of them but nevertheless left the children a few days until arrangements could be made for them then sent and took them all away. The authorities also called upon him to turn over all money and articles of any kind deposited by Armenians in contravention of the proclamation.

Very disquieting reports concerning the treatment of these people who have been sent away are current and if one half turn out to be true it will be shocking.

I have the honor to be Sir,
Your obedient servant,
Signed:- Oscar S. Heizer.
American Consul

http://www.armenian-genocide.org/us-7-20-15-text.html
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Major Warships Sunk in World War 1 1915

7 July 1915 - Amalfi, Italian, Pisa class Armoured Cruiser
Torpedoed by the German submarine UB14 pretending to be the Austrian U26 in the Adriatic.

http://www.worldwar1.co.uk/sunk15.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:42    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Battle of the Somme, 1916

The Newfoundland Advance
(...) Few of the wounded lying in No Man's Land could attempt to retire to safety before nightfall, and many either died where they lay, or were subsequently killed by artillery fire or watchful enemy riflemen and machine gunners. Several wounded were not recovered until four nights later. Meantime, the remnants of the Battalion, along with the reserve that had been held back, continued to hold a part of the line against expected German counter attacks until relieved on July 6, incurring further casualties in the process, including at least four officers on the afternoon of July 1. When they left the line on July 6 to billets in Engelbelmer the Battalion's fighting strength numbered 168 other ranks. Here, on July 7, Lieutenant O.W. Steele was wounded by shellfire and died the following day.

The Casualties
So far as can be ascertained, 22 officers and 758 other ranks were directly involved in the advance. Of these, all the officers and slightly under 658 other ranks became casualties, but exact figures are not available as casualties were reported for the day as a whole. Of the 780 men who went forward only about 110 survived unscathed, of whom only sixty eight were available for roll call the following day. The Battalion's War Diary on July 7 states that on July 1 the overall casualties for the Battalion were 14 officers and 296 other ranks killed, died of wounds or missing believed killed, and that 12 officers and 362 other ranks were wounded, a total of 684 all ranks out of a fighting strength of about 929. About 14 of the wounded subsequently died from their wounds. Afterward, the Divisional Commander was to write of the Newfoundlanders effort: "It was a magnificent display of trained and disciplined valour, and its assault failed of success because dead men can advance no further."

http://vac-acc.gc.ca/remembers/sub.cfm?source=memorials/ww1mem/beaumonthamel
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:50    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Mametz

Later in 1916, Australian soldiers knew this area well as they made their way up to the front line towards Flers during the last weeks of the Somme battle through villages like Fricourt, Mametz and Montauban. Many Australian units also spent part of the terrible Somme Winter of 1916–17 in places like Mametz Wood to the north–east of the village. To reach Mametz Wood take the minor road north out of Mametz village heading for Contalmaison. Less than half a kilometre out of the village there is a fork in the road with a green sign pointing right to the ‘Memorial Gallois’. Take this road which runs down into the valley until you come to a car park with Mametz Wood opposite across the fields.

Opposite the wood, at the top of a path up from the car park, is one of the most unusual monuments on the Western Front and one not to be missed. It is the 38th Welsh Division Memorial. Here, between 7 and 12 July 1916, the Welshmen fought hard, with heavy casualties, to clear Mametz Wood of the enemy. So awful was the fighting here that a Welsh soldier, Wyn Griffith, described it as the horror of our way of life and death and of our crucifixion of youth.

It is hard to imagine at this peaceful scene today the horror experienced by the Welshmen in Mametz Wood. Attacks on German positions in the wood were made on 10–11 July after the initial failure on 7 July 1916 to take the wood. Men – friend and foe – fought amid screaming shells, breaking timber and uprooted trees. For the majority this was their first experience of battle and during this period the division lost more than 4,000 men of whom 1,200 were killed. Shortly after the battle, poet Robert Graves, serving with the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, walked in Mametz Wood among the dead of both sides. From the experience he produced his poem, ‘A Dead Boche’ (Boche was British slang for a German soldier):

To you who’d read my songs of War
And only hear of blood and fame,
I'll say (you’ve heard it said before)
"War's Hell!" and if you doubt the same,
Today I found in Mametz Wood
A certain cure for lust of blood:

Where, propped against a shattered trunk,
In a great mess of things unclean,
Sat a dead Boche; he scowled and stunk
With clothes and face a sodden green,
Big–bellied, spectacled, crop–haired,
Dribbling black blood from nose and beard.


http://www.ww1westernfront.gov.au/mametz/mametz.html

"Remembering July 1916" - The Welsh at Mametz Wood

On 7 July 1916, seven days into the battle of the Somme, the men of the 38th (Welsh) Division (known as Lloyd George's Welsh Army) were directed to capture the formidable Mametz Wood, advancing suicidally uphill over open ground against sweeping machine gun and intense artillery fire.

The attacks, ending on 12 July in the clearance of the wood, saw vicious hand-to-hand fighting and innumerable acts of courage -and over 4000 Welsh deaths and casualties.

The Mametz memorial was erected 11 years ago in the form of a Welsh dragon challenging the wood. It is currently in excellent condition following recent refurbishment by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Members of the Western Front Association, who erected the monument after a public appeal, are nevertheless concerned that funds available will be insufficient for its long-term maintenance.

An appeal has been launched by the South Wales Branch of the WFA for funds to maintain the "Welsh" memorial at Mametz Wood on the Somme battlefield. They are therefore appealing to businesses, societies, clubs, public bodies and the general public for donations.

The Treasurer, Peter Gorman, of Plot 56, Butterfly Close, Earlswood, Nantycoed, Church Village, Pontypridd, CF38 1AZ (01443 202149) will welcome enquiries or donations (payable to W.F.A. Mametz Memorial). Also, members of the W.F.A. will be delighted to speak to societies, schools, etc., on this or any other aspect of the Western Front, 1914-1918.

The Memorial Today - The appeal for funds has prompted donations which the South Wales Branch of the WFA is using to keep the memorial in first class condition. In the early part of 2000 the Branch formulated plans to add two new features to the site and these were completed by July 2000 in time for the anniversary of the Battle. These new features are in the form of new steps for easier access up to the memorial, and a multi-lingual information plaque which gives a summary of the battle in English, Welsh and French. These are the result of the donations made to the fund which was set up by the Branch for the foreseeable future. The memorial is an important landmark and continues to attract a lot of visitors. Now that the history of the Great War is a school subject many schoolchildren are visiting the site to learn about the Battle. The fund is still continuing to grow and donations and ideas for new features are always welcome - please contact the Branch Secretary, Terry Powell.

http://www.hellfire-corner.demon.co.uk/mametz.htm
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Laatst aangepast door Percy Toplis op 06 Jul 2010 22:54, in totaal 1 keer bewerkt
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:52    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Rosa Luxemburg - Letters to Sophie Liebknecht

Leipzig, July 7, 1916 (A postcard)

Rosa Luxemburg was arrested on July 10th. This postcard is the only one written while Rosa Luxemburg was still at liberty.

My dear little Sonya,[1]

The heat is steamy and oppressive, as it so often is in Leipzig – I find the weather here very trying. This morning I sat for two hours beside the pond in the park, reading The Man of Property.[2]

It’s brilliant. A little old woman sat down beside me, glanced at the title page, and smiled, saying: “That must be a fine book. I am fond of reading myself”. Before I settled down to read, of course I had a good look at the trees and shrubs in the park, and was glad to see that they were all old friends. It is quite different with human beings, for I find that contact with them grows continually more unsatisfying: I think I shall retire into a hermitage, like St. Antony – minus the temptations! Try not to worry.

With much love,
Rosa

Love to the children.

Footnotes
[1] Pet name for Sophie Liebknecht, wife of Karl Liebknecht. R.L. sometimes uses the diminutive form Sonichka. Occasionally it is Sonyusha. Karl Liebknecht, son of Wilhelm Liebknecht, was born in 1871, and was murdered, like R.L., on the night of January 15th, 1919.
[2] John Galsworthy’s novel.


http://www.marxists.org/archive/luxemburg/1916/07/07.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 22:58    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

2nd South African Infantry at Delville Wood, July 1916 - EXTRACTS FROM THE DIARY OF WALTER GIDDY

1916 Jul 7. Made to sleep in the trench on account of the Hun shells flying a bit too near, had a cold rough night, but things have quietened a bit this morning, so we are back in our little shack made out of waterproofs. Bloody Fritz, he had started shelling the road, about 400 yards away and directly in line of us. A Frenchie was standing on the parapet and was excitedly beckoning to us. He'd put up his hands and point to a communication trench ahead. Couln't make out what the beggar was driving at, so we ran up to him, and ahead were dozens of Hun prisoners filling out of the trench. It rained so hard our shack was just a mud-pool, busy drying our kit.

http://www.cairogang.com/escaped/king/delville-wood/delville-wood.html
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 23:00    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

7 July 1917 - Potato Eaters Shot

A shortage of potatoes, the well-known main Dutch food, caused a bloody riot in Amsterdam towards the end of June 1917. It was called the "Aardappeloproer" (Potato Revolt), and it lasted a week. Everywhere in the city plunderers tried to obtain food. Potatoes were scarce and very expensive as a result of the First World War. The police and the military fired at the demonstrators. Only after seven days was peace restored in the city, and the results of the riot were totaled: ten people killed and more than a hundred wounded.

"How a portion of potatoes is ordered in Amsterdam"
cartoon of Johan Braakensiek, July 1917

Te bekijken op http://www.iisg.nl/today/en/07-07.php
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 23:01    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Paul Painleve on the Second Battle of the Aisne, 7 July 1917

Reproduced below is the text of French War Minister Paul Painleve's public statement (dated 7 July 1917) in the wake of the failure of the French Army's offensive at the Aisne and Champagne.

The French Army's failure to achieve success during the Aisne/Champagne offensive - which was opposed outright by Painleve, who foresaw disaster - directly led to the replacement of the Commander-in-Chief Robert Nivelle. Nivelle, who had promised an end to the war through victory at the Aisne, was replaced by Henri-Philippe Petain.

Paul Painleve, French Minister of War, on the Third Battle of the Aisne and Second Battle of Champagne, 7 July 1917

Grave mistakes were made in the course of our last offensive. We care neither to deny nor to minimize them. France is sufficiently sure of herself to be able to look the truth in the face.

Yes, the price paid for the results that were obtained were paid for too dearly. It is true we suffered heavy losses, which, though they fell short of the fantastic figures that have been set about no one knows by whom, were unnecessarily heavy losses which could have been avoided and must be avoided in the future.

The heads of the army on whom falls the responsibility for these mistakes have, in spite of the glorious services to which they might have appealed, been relieved of their command. [NB: On May 17th General Nivelle was withdrawn from command and General Petain appointed in his stead. General Foch was made Petain's Chief of Staff.]

We must have done with rash plans whose grandiose conception hardly hides their emptiness and lack of preparation. We must have a rational and positive war policy, endowed with a prudence that is quite consistent with energy, but does not force impossibilities from human flesh and blood.

Such a policy more than ever necessary now is to be that of the Government. This policy will enable us to keep strong until the final battles, and it will enable us to give our army a powerful armament of munitions and of heavy artillery.

This policy, fruitful in results but economical in human life, we now know for certain will be followed in the future, since the General who is now at the head of the army has made himself the protagonist of it. After the attack on Carency, one of the most glorious episodes in this war, General Petain did not shrink from declaring that infantry was powerless against entrenchments that had not been overthrown by artillery, and in consequence he has never failed to employ these tactics of artillery preparation for attack.

Our Allies, he said, know that nothing can bend the will of France. Whatever happens she will not fail in her task. But they know also that our army is like an army which protects civilization, and that its blood is flowing in streams.

This thought, more than any other, determined the United States to enter the struggle. They did not wish France to resemble the funeral pile which illumines the world while consuming itself. The Government can give you the assurance that France will be able to reconcile her military effort and her economic effort.

Victory is certain on the one condition that the morale in the country remains intact. Our soldiers must fight, resist, and die at their posts. History will say that they reached the limits of human courage. Our Republican army must know why it is fighting. Victory or submission, as President Wilson said, that is the alternative. There is no other.

If our will should seem to bend, if a crack should seen to appear in the military bloc of the Allies, you would see the engaging smiles of Herr Scheidemann succeeded by the atrocious grimace of pan-Germanism.

We shall not allow Prussian militarism to lay its heel on our neck. Until now France has victoriously borne the trial and has resisted the most monstrous attempt. No nation has shown more perfect discipline.

It is necessary that that should continue until the hour of final victory. No impatience and no manoeuvre must intervene to defeat our union.

We have to fight, and whoever advises us now to lay down our arms makes himself the accomplice of our foe.

Source Records of the Great War, Vol. V, ed. Charles F. Horne, National Alumni 1923, http://www.firstworldwar.com/source/champagne3_painleve.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 23:03    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Russian Army Commander-in-Chief Alexei Brusilov's Official Announcements of the Kerenski Offensive

7 July 1917

In the direction of Zloczow [on the Lemberg-Tarnopol railway], in the region of Batkow-Manajow, after artillery preparation, our infantry attacked the strongly fortified positions of the enemy and occupied three lines of trenches, but towards evening the enemy succeeded, by a series of counter-attacks, in pressing back our detachments.

On the sector of the heights north of Presowce, Lawrykowce, Trawotloki, Hodow [all near Zborow and north of Brzezany], and the wood to the west of Koniuchy, our detachments conducted an offensive and engaged in a stubborn battle throughout the day of July 6th.

Fortified positions constantly changed hands. The enemy bringing up fresh reserves, executed a series of counter-attacks. The more formidable of these counter-attacks came from the direction of the village Urlow and the woods to the west of Koniuchy, where in certain places the enemy succeeded in pressing back our attacking detachments.

Towards the evening there remained in our hands the heights to the northwest of Presowce, the villages of Lawrykowce and Trawotloki, and the heights to the east of Hodow.

In the battle of July 6th we captured 17 officers and 672 Men.

In the direction of Zloczow during the night of July 6th-7th the enemy launched energetic counter-attacks on the front of Hodow and in the wood to the west of Koniuchy, attempting to dislodge our troops from the positions which they captured in the battle on July 6th. All these attacks were repelled. Attacks by dense enemy columns supported by armoured motor-cars west of Byszki, were also repelled.

http://www.firstworldwar.com/source/russia_brusilov2.htm
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 23:06    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

Dada No.1 July 1917 Copy

http://www.scribd.com/doc/26931542/Dada-No-1-July-1917-Copy
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BerichtGeplaatst: 06 Jul 2010 23:18    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

VICTORIA CROSS - Awards to New Zealand Servicemen

Lance-Corporal Samuel Frickleton; 3rd Battalion, N.Z. Rifle Brigade, 1st NZEF; 7 July 1917; Messines, Belgium; 2 August 1918.

http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/1966/victoria-cross/3

Samuel Frickleton

Frickleton was born in Slamannan, Stirlingshire, Scotland. He immigrated to New Zealand in 1908, and worked as a coal-miner in Blackball in the South Island. At the onset of the First World War, Frickleton and his four brothers joined the New Zealand Expeditionary Force, and all fought at Gallipoli in 1915. After the battle, Frickleton was invalided home from Gallipoli and subsequently discharged as medically unfit for active service. Having recovered, he re-enlisted in 1916, and was posted to France as a lance-corporal in the 3rd Battalion, New Zealand Rifle Brigade.

Frickleton was awarded a Victoria Cross of his action on 7 June 1917 at Messines, Belgium. The citation notes that "[a]lthough slightly wounded, Lance Corporal Frickleton dashed forward at the head of his section, rushed through a barrage and personally destroyed with bombs an enemy machine gun and crew, which were causing heavy casualties. He then attacked the second gun, killing the whole of the crew of twelve. By the destruction of these two guns he undoubtedly saved his own and other units from very severe casualties and his magnificent courage and gallantry ensured the capture of the objective."

Frickleton was severely wounded later in the war, and was evacuated to England. After the war, he remained in the Army. He retired with the rank of Captain in 1927, when he joined the Territorial Force.

Frickleton married in 1921, and one child, a son, was born in 1928.

Frickleton died in 1971 in Wellington, New Zealand at the age of 80. His grave is in Taita Serviceman's Cemetery, Naenae, New Zealand (Plot 1188, with headstone). In June 2007, a plaque commemorating his bravery was unveiled at the Messines Ridge British Cemetery.

His Victoria Cross was on display at the QEII Army Memorial Museum, Waiouru, New Zealand, when it was one of nine Victoria Crosses that were among a hundred medals stolen from the museum in December 2007. On 16 February 2008 New Zealand Police announced all the medals had been recovered.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Frickleton
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BerichtGeplaatst: 08 Jul 2011 11:05    Onderwerp: Reageer met quote

hartverscheurend:

War Dairy Entry: July 7th 1916
Very heavy rain this morning. I met De Lisle at Mesnil Station at 10am to find some new brigade head qrs. No one can get to our present ones except in fear of their lives. The hd qrs themselves are all right except that they are too small, but every approach is incessantly shelled. He wanted us to go into a house in Mesnil near the station, a spot that is always shelled, but he eventually allowed us to establish them in a bank to the W of the village. They were shelling the station while we were waiting for him close by. We then went on round the trenches, and I got wet to the skin.

They started shelling Thiepval Wood before 6am and went on putting them in till after 10am, metal was flying everywhere. Sometime during this, they turned the 49th Divn out of the small bit of the German system of trenches they still held in front of the wood. Thank heaven I don’t live in the wood but can sit and watch it across the stream.

All sorts of people looked in today. We are being relieved tomorrow by the 86th Bde and are going back for a rest (10 days with luck).

One of our aeroplanes fell in Aveluy Wood this morning about 500 yds behind this spot, it was flying very low at the time, I did not see it.

Lees verder op:
(c) http://somme95.blogspot.com/2011_07_03_archive.html
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